Jack settling in nicely

Jack Brooks is finding his new surroundings very much to his liking.

Earlier this week we caught up with the fast bowler, who joined Somerset at the end of 2018, to see how he’s settled in.

“I’m really enjoying being here,” he said. “Everyone’s been very welcoming and that’s helped to make it an easy transition. There’s a very tough working environment here at the Club but it’s been really good fun so far.

“It’s been quite hard work getting back into the winter routine of four or five days training a week. That never gets any easier but I’ve always prided myself on my fitness, so I smashed that until Christmas. Since then I’ve been easing back into the cricket by hitting a few balls with Paul Tweddle and bowling with Jason Kerr.”

How has he found his transition into a new dressing room?

“I like to think that I’m a pretty easy-going sort of person and can fit into most environments. I like to see how people go about their business and then join in and have a word when I need to.

“The lads here are a hard-working bunch but pretty easy-going. They all live in and around the town and socialize together. I’m looking forward to getting back into that sort of environment and it reminds me of when I was at Northants.

“Currently I’m living in town and have moved in with Dom Bess, his girlfriend and James Alway (SCCC Assistant Strength & Conditioning Coach). I’ve been teaching Dom how to cook my favourite courgette dish! It’s been ideal because when you move to a new area and don’t know anyone it’s good to move in with people and get to know the area a little bit better.”

How does Taunton compare to Leeds, where Jack was previously living?

“Leeds is a very busy city whereas Taunton is a pretty quiet town with a slightly older demographic as well, but I’m a country boy at heart and come from Oxford originally.

“My mum’s from Bath but moved to Oxford in her early 20s when she got married. She’s still got a cousin in Bath who is a Somerset Member and comes down to Taunton to watch a lot of cricket. This is the nearest I can get to playing for my home county.”

Jack is also busy this winter developing another area of interest as he explained: “I started my Level 3 Coaching Award last week. There’s quite a lot to take in to begin with and this will involve a lot of time away. There’s some paperwork involved as well in the meantime, so I’m a long way off finishing at the moment. I like the idea of coaching and it’s something that I can get stuck into. I like trying to help other people out and expanding my own knowledge of the game.

“It’s going to be a long road, but it will be nice to do something away from the playing side of things. It makes you think differently about the game as well.”

It’s a busy few weeks for Jack because he will also be heading out to Potchefstroom in South Africa in February.

“I’m going with Pro Coaching,” he said. “I’ve done a lot of work with them over the years. When I moved from Yorkshire, I thought that would be the end of my involvement with them. Luckily for me Jason Kerr and Andy Hurry have been really accommodating with me going away. While I’m there I will be incorporating some training outside and some gym work as well as doing some coaching. It’s a bit like Loughborough but in the sunshine!

“Soon after I get back from that we all fly out to Abu Dhabi for pre-season. After that it’ll be early April and we’ll be playing against Kent in the Championship here.”

How has Jack been received by the local fans he has met up with?

“Everybody has been really friendly towards me,” he explained. “Quite a few of the local supporters have come up to me and spoken to me in the car park, which is great. It’s nice to go somewhere where you feel wanted, and one of the initial things is to be accepted by your team mates and the people who watch you.

“I think it’s going to be a big summer, so the sooner it begins, and I can start taking wickets for Somerset, the better.”

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